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Hornby Island Conservancy’s 6th Annual HerringFest



February 2, 2022


Conservancy Hornby Island releases tickets to the public for their 6th annual HerringFest to celebrate herring and discuss solutions for recovery of Pacific herring.

Photo/Video links

HORNBY ISLAND, BC – Conservancy Hornby Island (CHI) is going into their 6th annual HerringFest celebration with a sense of hope. In December 2021, Fisheries Minister Honourable Joyce Murray made an unexpected but welcome announcement of the closure of most Pacific herring fisheries on the west coast except for harvests by First Nations for food and ceremonial purposes. The Strait of Georgia commercial fishery has been reduced from 20% to 10% of the predicted spawning biomass. Although CHI views this as good news, there is still work to be done to better protect Pacific herring. CHI’s concerns are, is 10% harvest precautionary enough given changing ocean conditions and increasing needs of a wide variety of marine species and how will the livelihoods of fishers be protected?

CHI has urged the Minister to consider making herring recovery the priority at this time, rather than continuing an unsustainable fishery at all. What is needed is a truly ecological recovery plan, which implements scientific study of the resident herring, protection of herring habitat, consideration for First Nations rights, protection of livelihoods of fishers, and prey availability for the many marine species which rely on herring as a primary food source, such as resident orca, humpback whales and chinook salmon.

Conservancy Hornby Island is inviting the public to be part of this special opportunity to continue building momentum towards ensuring sufficient protection of Pacific herring and to celebrate the ecological spectacle that occurs annually on the Salish Sea known as the herring spawn, with their event: HerringFest 2022. Taking place from March 3rd-6th, HerringFest will feature:

Sea Life Boat Trips: educational, fun, and the best way to see herds of sea lions, hundreds of seabirds, spawning herring and possibly killer whales and humpback whales. This in-person event runs from March 2nd-4th & 6th-8th on Hornby Island. Tickets are by donation with a suggested donation of at least $20 per person. 25% of all boat trip donations will go directly towards CHI’s Herring Recovery Program.

Art Show & Sale: In conjunction with Hornby Arts, HerringFest will feature a “Let the Herring Live” themed art show and sale, which will be both in-person at the Community Hall, as well as online. Viewing begins March 3rd until the 6th, after which a catalogue of artworks will be available for sale on https://hornbyarts.com. Proceeds will be equally split with CHI and the artists. Artists can submit their work by emailing Juniper at juniper@hornbyarts.com.

Film Night: Tune in on ZOOM for Friday Night Film Night which will occur March 4th, from 7-9pm PST, and will feature an array of films about Herring Defence, such as Yáa at wooné/Respect for All Things by Louise Brady and Peter Bradley, Dance of the Herring and Why is the Salish Sea So Rich with Life? by Bob Turner, We are the Herring by Sam Rose Phillips, The Price of Fish by Mike Bhana, introduced by Dr. Evelyn Pinkerton, and Before the Beauty is Gone by Mackai Sharp.

Herring School: The final event of HerringFest 2022 will be Saturday Herring School, an interactive webinar on ZOOM at 9:30am-12:45pm PST on March 6th. Herring School will feature an array of guest speakers knowledgeable on research, activism, and conservation including Chief Eric Pelkey of the W̱SÁNEĆ First Nation, Saul ‘Hazil’hba Brown, who is from the Nuu-chah-nulth and Heiltsuk Nations and the founder of Y̓íḷbas Consultancy, Thomas Thornton, author of Herring and People of the North Pacific: Sustaining a Keystone Species, Herring Rabble Rouser Jim Shortreed, Ben Friedman, Head of Product at Wildtype, a producer of lab-grown fish, and Gord Johns, the NDP MP for Courtenay and Alberni. There will be a round table discussion with all speakers, and attendees will be able to interact with the speakers through the Q&A.

Tickets to the 6th Annual HerringFest are by donation and can be purchased at conservancyhornbyisland.org/herringfest2022. 

Photo/Video links


Grant Scott, Chair of Conservancy Hornby Island: gcscott@telus.net Tel (250) 218-2323

Cath Gray, Executive Director, Conservancy Hornby Island: chihornby@gmail.com Tel. (250) 335-9056

Conservancy Hornby Island

P.O. Box 55

Hornby Island, BC

V0R 1Z0


Email: chihornby@gmail.com



Established in 1991, Conservancy Hornby Island (CHI) is a volunteer organization formed to undertake and support local and regional conservation projects to benefit Hornby Island’s land and marine environments. Each year, CHI hosts HerringFest, a gathering of art, music and renowned speakers which celebrates the annual herring spawn and engages scientists, environmentalists, First Nations participants, and local communities in provocative discussions to help protect Pacific Herring.


SourceCath Gray
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